A survey was recently conducted that included 10,000 participants who are millionaires. In the study, the top careers for millionaires included accountants, teachers, and people working in management.
According to this survey, 8 out of 10 millionaires came from at or below middle-income level. 1 out of 3 people never even made six figures in any working year of their career, yet they retired as millionaires.
Many people believe accumulating wealth is only possible with high-paying careers (and while that helps) it isn’t the only way.
This guide goes over the steps you can take to build your wealth, even with a regular salary.
We’ll go over important topics like:
- Smart budgeting
- Making the most of your income
- Investing to make your money work for you
- and more
What’s Your Financial Situation?
The most important step to building your get rich plan is to assess your current financial situation.
What’s your monthly income? Include your salary and any additional earnings from side hustles or freelance work.
It’s important to calculate your income after taxes since this is the money you can actually spend or save.
What’s your debt? Make a list of all your outstanding debt including: student loans, credit cards, mortgages, and also include the interest rates.
Doing this is going to help you figure out which debts you should pay off first.
Calculate your net worth.
Do this by subtracting your total debt from your total assets, which includes things like savings, investments, and property.
Create a budget that works for you.
Budgeting isn’t about penny pinching, it’s about giving your money a job. We’ll go over this more in depth later in this post.
Create a balance sheet. A balance sheet is a document that gives you a clear picture of your financials.
This sheet will include important numbers like your assets, liabilities, and equity.
Living Below Your Means
Practicing frugality is one of the best things you can do for your money if you have a normal job.
Being frugal allows you to get richer and accumulate wealth without having to go to a high-paying career or risky investments.
The #1 most important thing you can do for your finances is have a budget and actually follow it.
Steps to create a budget:
- List total monthly income
- List spending categories
- Designate amount for each category
- Track expenses at least once a week, I recommend every 3 days to stay on top of your budget
What categories should you include in your budget?
- Debt payments
- Medical and healthcare
- Fun spending + entertainment
- Household supplies
- Gifts + donations
Once you have all your categories written out, it’s time to designate a certain amount to each category.
If you have leftover money, that is great and should definitely go toward your savings.
Now let’s find a way to reduce your expenses.
Reducing your expenses
Here are the top things to do to reduce your expenses:
- Focus on making healthy recipes at home instead of dining out
- Avoid lifestyle creep by making sure you save a portion of every raise
- Use Rakuten to get cash back when you’re online shopping
- Review your subscriptions and see if you need to keep all of them
- Buy generic brands over name brands
- Pay off high-interest credit card debt so you avoid paying unnecessary interest
- Contact service providers like cable and internet and negotiate for better rates
- Switch cell phone mobile carriers to Mint Mobile (which is what I use and pay only $15/month!)
- Choose a bank with no fees like Ally Bank (also who I use to bank)
Choose a budgeting tool
There are many methods to budgeting.
Here are a few of the most popular budgeting methods:
- Mobile apps like EveryDollar
- Excel spreadsheets
- Budget printables
- Cash envelope system
I’ve been using the free version of EveryDollar app for years and highly recommend it.
With EveryDollar you can customize categories and track spending. The paid version has a ton of more features that you might be interested in as well.
Increase Savings and Investments
Once you’ve got your budget in place and you’ve cut costs where you can, aim to save at least 15-20% of your income. You may even want to consider using automatic transfers to savings account to make the process simple.
If you have no idea how to invest your money, I recommend the following resource:
Build Wealth By Investing In Index Funds – This is course aimed to teach you how to invest in the most simple terms possible. You’ll learn which stocks you should buy, which index fund you should buy, how taxes work on investments, and everything else you need to know to successfully invest for retirement.
Pictured below is an example of how powerful saving VS investing is.
Kelsey and Kayla are both saving $500/month, but Kelsey decides to save her money in a bank savings account that pays 2%, while Kayla invests her money in an index fund earning 10%. 40 years later, Kelsey has about $365,000 and Kayla has almost $2.8 million.
Real estate investing
Believe it or not, the average person can get into real estate investing.
This type of investing is not exclusive to wealth individuals only. Many successful real estate investors started with modest means and gradually built their portfolio.
Here are steps to help the average person get started in real estate investing.
- Educate yourself by learning about real estate investing through blogs and podcasts
- Set clear goals that you want to achieve through real estate investing
- Determine how much capital you can accolade to real estate investments
- Start small with affordable property like a condo
- Learn about making money with rental properties
- Network with other experienced real estate investors
- Start saving for future investments
- Continue to educate yourself on real estate market trends, legal regulations, and investment strategies
Remember that real estate investing is a long-term endeavor, and it may take time to achieve your financial goals. It’s important to have patience, a clear investment strategy, and the ability to adapt to changing market conditions.
While there are risks involved, many individuals have successfully built wealth through real estate investing, and with careful planning and diligence, you can too.
Extra Things to Do To Improve Finances
Keep track of your net worth
Keeping track of your net worth is a fun way to see how much money you have in real time.
To calculate your net worth, you want to add up all of your assets (cash, savings, investments, real estate, etc) and subtract your liabilities (mortgages, loans, credit card debt, other outstanding debt).
You can use an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of this or use one of the many personal finance apps like Mint.
Have an emergency fund so you don’t go into debt to pay off an expenses
An emergency fund includes about 6 months of living expenses. This is a fund for unexpected expenses that come up. This could be visits to the ER, vet visits, car maintenance, or house repairs.
An emergency fund is also helpful in case you ever lose a job and need some time to find a new job.
One of the best ways to get rich is to make more money.
Here are some ways you can achieve this:
Ask for a raise
Keep track of your achievements at work and provide so much value to your company that your boss can’t say no to a raise
If your job offers bonuses, make sure you understand what you need to do to quality for the bonus and meet those targets.
Start a side hustle
Start a business
If you have a unique skill or great idea for a business, turn it into a small business. This is one of the best ways to generate extra income, although it takes a lot of hard work and time.
Navigating Financial Goals
You can achieve financial freedom and become a millionaire with a normal job.
Visualize what retirement looks like to you
What age do you want to retire? What kind of lifestyle do you want? Where do you want to live? These are some of the questions you should ask yourself.
Financial steps you need to take
Do you need to pay off debt first? Do you have an emergency fund in place? Have you started contributing to a 401(k) yet?
Invest in yourself
Are you continually improving your skills, education, and increasing your earning potential? Be on the lookout for promotions and advancements in your area.
Throughout this process, remember to:
- Set specific, measurable, and achievable financial goals
- Regularly review and adjust your plan as necessary
- Maintain a disciplined approach to saving and investing
- Be patient, as wealth-building takes time and commitment
Avoiding Common Financial Pitfalls
Be careful to avoid things that sound too good to be true.
Here are tips to avoiding common financial pitfalls:
- Stay clear of get-rich-quick schemes
- Be aware of lifestyle inflation as you get raises
- Delay large purchases and consider whether you truly need the item
- Don’t get involved in MLM’s (multi-level marketing companies)
- Be responsible with credit card spending – always pay it off as soon as you use it
Embrace the Slow and Steady Approach
Accumulating wealth can take time, hard work, and patience.
Focus on your long-term goals by having the mindset of a long-term investor. Don’t chase quick, risky returns and instead develop a patient money mindset.
Here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Have clear financial goals and timelines. When do you want to reach a certain savings amount?
- Be aware of your spending. Budget and keep track of expenses and look for areas where you can improve.
- Consistently contribute to your savings and investments. You’ll benefit from the power of compound interest by doing this.
- Avoid making impulsive decisions. Building wealth is a marathon, not a sprint.
How To Get Rich With A Normal Job – Common FAQ
What’s the easiest way to get rich with a normal job?
A great way to get rich with a normal job is:
- Get rid of high-interest debt
- Take advantage of free money like your company’s 401k match or a high yield savings bank account
- Invest for the long run, not the short term
- Create a financial plan and set money goals
- Invest in a Roth IRA and your company’s 401k
Should I pursue a higher-paying job?
A higher paying job can lead to (you guessed it) more money.
Here are my best tips for pursuing a higher paying job:
- Start your own business
- Climb the corporate ladder
- Ask for a raise
What role does education play in wealth building?
Here are some tips for wealth building without a college degree:
- Intern or volunteer in a space where you want to advance
- Work as an independent contractor or freelancer to gain experience
- Attend workshops, trainings, and read books to gain skills
- Seek mentorship from someone in your desired field
It’s more than possible to achieve financial success with a normal job.
- having an emergency fund
- keeping track of your net worth
- and finding ways to earn more money
All rich people started somewhere and what’s most important is taking the first step.
With these tips, you can become rich with a normal job.
Best side hustles to start right now:
- Sell printables on Etsy – Selling printables is the #1 side hustle to make extra money. This can be done on your own schedule and turn into passive income! You can earn over $10,000 a year selling printables.
- Sell dog treats – Make $1,000+ selling dog treats from the comfort of your home. Be your own boss and make your own schedule.
- Proofreading – Earn $20+ an hour proofreading from home. Great for people who enjoy editing and working from home.
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Alexis Schroeder is the CEO and founder of FITnancials.
With budgeting and side hustles, Alexis paid off over $40,000 of debt and made over $100,000 in side hustles in college.
Since starting this website over 10 years ago, Fitnancials has reached over 3,000,000 readers. We’ve been featured on sites like Forbes, Yahoo, Side Hustle School, GOBankingRates, Mint, and many more.
If you want to contact Alexis, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.